According to the Resolution 14/X/2021, dated 6 August 2021, Cape Verde was the first State to approve, for ratification by the National Assembly of Cape Verde, the Agreement on Mobility between Member States of the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (hereinafter referred ad “CPLP”). The Resolution entered into force on 9 August 2021.
The CPLP is made up of nine different countries, including Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Portugal, São Tomé and Príncipe, and Timor-Leste. The agreement will take effect in 2022 and establishes the framework for cooperation on the mobility of citizens of the Member States of the CPLP and between these same States, through a system that takes into account the particularities of each State.
The Agreement is structured on the basis of the following principles:
a) Exemption from visa requirements for holders of diplomatic, official, special and service passports for stays of up to 90 days;
b) Mobility of nationals of one Party who are holders of ordinary passport, within the territory of the other Parties, without prejudice to the provisions relating to the credibility and authenticity of documents, according to the degree of commitment of the Parties;
c) Freedom of the Parties to choose the mobility modalities, the categories of persons covered and of the Parties with which it establishes partnerships beyond the minimum limit provisions and the other terms and conditions set out in the Agreement;
d) Safeguarding for the international commitments of the mobility commitments of the Parties arising from Regional Integration Agreements to which are Parties.
The CPLP Mobility, understood as the regime of entry and stay of a citizen of one Party in the territory of another Party, may take the following forms:
a) CPLP Short Stay;
b) CPLP Temporary Stay;
c) CPLP Residency Visa;
d) CPLP Residency.
The CPLP Mobility, under the terms of the previous article, covers:
a) Holders of diplomatic, official special and service passports;
b) Holders of ordinary passports.
To facilitate the increase of mobility and their adjustment to the internal realities of the Parties, the Parties shall also be permitted, in the additional instruments of partnership, to subdivide ordinary passport holders into groups according to the activities they carry out or the situation they find themselves in, or any other relevant criteria, namely:
a) Teachers; researchers in recognized centers of expertise; and highly qualified technicians;
c) Cultural operators such as artists, athletes, journalists, writers, musicians, promoters and organizers of cultural and sporting events;
d) Students in exchange programs between educational institutions of the Party of the nationality of the visitors and those of the receiving Party.
This Resolution is a very important step for the development of these countries and the acceptance of current reality – daily movement and trading among the Lusophone markets.
Article by Duarte Marques da Cruz
Duarte Marques da Cruz Duarte Marques da Cruz is partner of the Portuguese law firm MC&A, specialised in international business advisory, with a special focus in Lusophone markets. With extensive experience in the Energy sector (Renewables and Oil & Gas) and in International Taxation, he has supported international companies in major upstream, midstream transactions and projects, including in implementing, exploration and development programs. Duarte has also supported international clients in other areas of practice, namely, Mining, Transport & Logistics, Regulatory Compliance and Mergers & Acquisitions in Mozambique, Angola and Portugal. Through this Simplification Project, Angola shows to investors and economic players that intends to maintain its bet on the internal and external investment; on other hand, it is important to note that this simplification procedure is only at its beginning and is expected a wider range of facilitation in multiple public administration proceedings and regarding more sectors of the economy.